The Environmental Protection Agency recently ordered Volkswagen to recall nearly half a million vehicles from as early as 2009. Those vehicles include software that activates certain anti-pollution functions only when the car senses that it is getting an emissions test.
On Sunday, Volkswagen’s CEO, Dr. Martin Winterkorn, issued a statement that effectively outlines the company’s transgressions:
The Board of Management at Volkswagen AG takes these findings very seriously. I personally am deeply sorry that we have broken the trust of our customers and the public. We will cooperate fully with the responsible agencies, with transparency and urgency, to clearly, openly, and completely establish all of the facts of this case. Volkswagen has ordered an external investigation of this matter.
We do not and will not tolerate violations of any kind of our internal rules or of the law.
The trust of our customers and the public is and continues to be our most important asset. We at Volkswagen will do everything that must be done in order to re-establish the trust that so many people have placed in us, and we will do everything necessary in order to reverse the damage this has caused. This matter has first priority for me, personally, and for our entire Board of Management.